POLLEXFEN, Nicholas (1678-1715), of St. Stephen Walbrook, London

Published in The History of Parliament: the House of Commons 1690-1715, ed. D. Hayton, E. Cruickshanks, S. Handley, 2002
Available from Boydell and Brewer



1705 - 17 Nov. 1707
22 Dec. 1707 - 1708

Family and Education

bap. 18 Nov. 1678, 1st s. of Nicholas Pollexfen, merchant, of St. Stephen Walbrook by Elizabeth Read, wid. of Isaac Meynell of Lombard Street, London.  m. 24 Sept. 1704, Rosamund, da. of Sir Thomas Yarburgh†, of Snaith, Yorks., maid of honour to Queen Anne, 1s. at least.  suc. fa. bef.1689.1

Offices Held

Member, Mercers’ Co.

Commr. prizes May 1706–Nov. 1707, excise May 1710–July 1712, duties on soap and paper May 1712, wine and starch June 1712.2


The son of a wealthy London merchant, Pollexfen was left to the care of his mother who later married William Norris*. His uncle and guardian John Pollexfen* refused for some time to give him any allowance out of his father’s estate. At the election to the first Parliament of 1701 his mother expected him to go to Liverpool to assist his father-in-law’s election, but he went off instead with ‘Mr Cecil’ (Robert* or William*) and she was unable to get in touch with him. Pollexfen himself first stood for Parliament in 1705, when he was successful for Great Bedwyn. On 25 Oct. he voted for the Court candidate as Speaker, while on 13 Dec. 1706 he presented information from the commissioners for prizes. During this time he was appointed a j.p. for Middlesex by Lord Keeper Cowper (William*). However, in November 1707, when the commissioners of prizes were expected to be expelled from the House under the place clause of the Regency Act, Pollexfen resigned from the commission on the 15th, though this did not prevent him from being expelled two days later. He was defeated at the ensuing by-election, but was seated on petition on 22 Dec. On 18 Feb. 1708 he acted as a teller against a motion for sending to the sheriffs and other returning officers the resolutions of the House concerning methods of determining contested elections. Noted as a Tory in an analysis of Parliament in early 1708, Pollexfen was defeated at Great Bedwyn in the election that year. In the spring of 1710 he was appointed to the excise commission at £800 p.a., apparently with the support of Lord Treasurer Godolphin (Sidney†). He was continued in office after the ministerial changes of 1710, although his appointment to two other separate revenue-related commissions in 1712 immediately preceded his removal from the excise commission. Pollexfen died in 1715.3

Ref Volumes: 1690-1715

Author: Eveline Cruickshanks


  • 1. IGI, London; Vivian, Vis. Devon, 600–1; London Mar. Lic. ed. Foster, 1072; Luttrell, Brief Relation, v. 469.
  • 2. Boyer, Anne Annals, ix. 417; Pol. State, iv. 31; Luttrell, vi. 50; Folger Shakespeare Lib. Newdigate newsletter 25 May 1706; Cal. Treas. Bks. xxvi. 288, 335, 343.
  • 3. E. F. Eliott-Drake, Fam. and Heirs of Sir Francis Drake, ii. 56, 81; Norris Pprs. (Chetham Soc. ix), 55; Herts. RO, Panshanger mss, D/EP F152, list of j.p.s put in or put out by Ld. Cowper, [n.d].; Marlborough–Godolphin Corresp. 1479.